Weekend Takeaways: Panthers overflowing with talent and firing on all cylinders

the latest tech news, global tech news daily, tech news today, startups, usa tech, asia tech, china tech, eu tech, global tech, in-depth electronics reviews, 24h tech news, 24h tech news, top mobile apps, tech news daily, gaming hardware, big tech news, useful technology tips, expert interviews, reporting on the business of technology, venture capital funding, programing language

Start any kind of NHL-related conversation and, these days, you’ll soon arrive at one unavoidable point: We need to talk about the Florida Panthers.

I don’t know how any exchange about the weekend that was in hockey wouldn’t be headlined by the team that put up a sweet 16 goals on two opponents, beating the Dallas Stars 7-1 on Friday before pummelling the Columbus Blue Jackets 9-2 the very next night. Eleven Cats had at least two points this weekend and Florida put a total of 90 shots on goal between the two contests.

the latest tech news, global tech news daily, tech news today, startups, usa tech, asia tech, china tech, eu tech, global tech, in-depth electronics reviews, 24h tech news, 24h tech news, top mobile apps, tech news daily, gaming hardware, big tech news, useful technology tips, expert interviews, reporting on the business of technology, venture capital funding, programing language

The Panthers’ .750 points percentage is the best in the league and their nine-goal effort versus Columbus came just 16 days after they also hung nine on their state rivals from Tampa Bay. Florida is averaging an even half-dozen goals-per-game in its past nine contests.

To put it in slightly snarky social media terms, is that good?

Global Tech News Daily

Is there a league better than the NHL we can put the Panthers in?

— Jeff Marek (@JeffMarek) January 16, 2022

Global Tech News Daily

Like rats being chucked on the ice from every part of the arena, Florida is coming at you from all conceivable angles right now. High-pick studs like Aleksander Barkov, Jonathan Huberdeau and Aaron Ekblad have established themselves as truly elite. The only players with more points than the 53 put up by Huberdeau this season are Hart Trophy-holders Alex Ovechkin (54) and Leon Draisaitl (also 54).

Rookie Anton Lundell, selected 12th overall in 2020, has 11 points in his past nine games and is looking like the kind of mid-round hit really good franchises make.

MacKenzie Weegar had four points in the win over Columbus and his 25 points this year are more than all but 11 defencemen have; how’s that for a guy selected 206th overall almost a decade ago in 2013?

Another ’13 pick — left winger Carter Verhaeghe — is playing at a 69-point pace for the second straight season in South Florida. The long-ago Toronto Maple Leafs selection came to the Cats via the Lightning and is exactly the type of rehabilitated scrap-heap guy that used to slip through Florida’s fingers. (Think Reilly Smith and Jonathan Marchessault). Now, the Panthers are a vehicle for talents like Verhaeghe and Anthony Duclair — five NHL stops in five years before Florida, point-per-game player today — to show what they can really do.

Both Sams — Bennett and Reinhart — are having career years after being plucked from places where it either wasn’t working personally (Bennett) or from a team perspective (Reinhart).

Even Florida’s splashy free-agent acquisitions are coming up roses, albeit after a couple rough acclimation years. Sergei Bobrovsky, the $10-million man, has a .921 save percentage overall and the third-best high-danger save percentage (.857) in the league among stoppers with at least 1,000 minutes in the crease.

Don’t forget, this is a team that experienced a coaching change earlier this season when Joel Quenneville had to step down after everything related to the sexual abuse suffered by former NHLer Kyle Beach during the latter’s time playing under Quenneville in Chicago came to light. Andrew Brunette has stepped in and shown he has the chops to be a head man.

Quenneville aside, even the off-ice stories have been good for Florida this year. Right before the season started, the 26-year-old Barkov inked an eight-year extension that will keep him in the Sunshine State for all his best NHL hockey. The hope is — under the stewardship of GM Bill Zito and wiling-to-open-the-wallet owner Vincent Viola — that an extension for Huberdeau will follow suit long before he gets to free agency in 2023.

You can’t talk big-picture about the Panthers without mentioning their dubious status as the team with the longest playoff series victory drought; not a single one since making the Stanley Cup Final in 1996. That outfit was a plucky bunch of underdogs. By contrast, today’s team is overflowing with talent and offering every indication the one remaining bad discussion about this club could change dramatically come spring.

Weekend Takeaways: Panthers overflowing with talent and firing on all cylinders
© Provided by Sportsnet

Other Takeaways

• The past 48 hours were not a banner weekend for Philadelphia sports. On Sunday, the Eagles were trounced by Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in NFL playoff action, while the Flyers lost their seventh straight contest on Saturday thanks to a 3-2 setback at the hands of the New York Rangers. Fun fact (unless you are, indeed, a Philly fan): The loss marked the Flyers’ third straight 3-2 defeat and the squad has not scored more than two goals in its past five outings.

The Flyers actually grabbed a one-goal lead on the Rangers halfway through the third thanks to Cam York’s first NHL marker, but it took the Blueshirts just 37 seconds to storm back and square the affair. In their history, the Flyers have lost at least seven straight games on just seven occasions. Two of them — thanks to a 10-game losing streak earlier in this campaign — have come in the past three months.

#NHL teams since in-season coaching change:#GoJetsGo 4-2-0#Canucks 9-3-1#BringItToBroad 5-7-3#Blackhawks 14-9-3#TimeToHunt 18-7-5

— Nick Alberga (@thegoldenmuzzy) January 16, 2022

• When Mats Zuccarello and the Minnesota Wild came together on a five-year, $30-million pact in the summer of 2019, something felt a little odd about the whole thing. The Wild were coming off a year in which they finished last in the Central Division and seemed to be entering a step-back phase, while Zuccarello was an over-30 veteran accustomed to being in the post-season with competitive Rangers and Stars squads.

Last year, though, Zuccarello played at a career-best 68-point pace for a surprising Wild squad and he’s gone to another level this season, scoring at an 88-point clip at age 34. The “Norwegian Hobbit” has really been on a mission of late, notching two goals and an assist during Friday’s 7-3 thrashing of the Anaheim Ducks. Zuccarello has been held off the scoresheet just twice in his past 17 outings and has 21 points during that stretch.

Weekend Warrior

Seeing his first NHL action since May 18 — and just his second game since March 2020 — lefty Louis Domingue stopped 40 of the 41 pucks he saw in San Jose to backstop the Pittsburgh Penguins to a 2-1 extra-time victory.

Domingue: “Ever since camp, I was prepared for this moment. I saw an opportunity – you either take it or you don’t. I thought I was focused. It wasn’t hard tonight to stay focused. I play for the Penguins. It’s a privilege to play for this team and this organization.” pic.twitter.com/AT9T7ec7R9

— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) January 16, 2022

Red and White Rankings

1. Toronto Maple Leafs (24-9-3): After their wild 6-5 win over the St. Louis Blues on Saturday night, the Maple Leafs have now put at least 40 shots on goal in three of their past half-dozen outings.

2. Winnipeg Jets (17-12-5): Kyle Connor went 1-1-2 in the Jets’ most recent outing, a 3-0 win versus the Red Wings in Connor’s home state. The American has been lights out all year and the Jets will need him to keep flying with four straight tough road draws in Washington, Nashville, Boston and Pittsburgh.

3. Calgary Flames (17-11-6): The Oilers’ spill has dominated the Alberta headlines, but Calgary is 2-7-1 in its past nine and faces the league-pacing Panthers at home on Tuesday.

4. Vancouver Canucks (17-18-3): Nothing like Elias Pettersson turning in his best performance of the year during Sunday’s much-needed 4-2 win in Washington to put out the first fire of the Bruce Boudreau era.

5. Edmonton Oilers (18-5-2): The last time Edmonton beat a playoff team was Dec. 1, when it downed the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Oilers are 2-10-2 since, with those only W’s coming against the expansion Kraken and the sinking Blue Jackets.

6. Ottawa Senators (11-18-2): After bagging a pair in the win over Edmonton on Saturday, Josh Norris is now scoring at a 43-goal pace in this, the 22-year-old’s second season in the league.

7. Montreal Canadiens (7-24-5): It looks as though Josh Anderson will return Monday for Montreal’s tilt in the desert with the Coyotes. The injured right winger hasn’t played since Dec. 2.

The Week Ahead

• It’s Martin Luther King Day in the United States, which means plenty of afternoon hockey south of the border. The Wild and Avalanche square off in a beauty in Colorado at 3 p.m. ET, the Shane Wright Bowl kicks off at 4 p.m. ET when the Habs visit Arizona, and Chris Pronger — the only defenceman to win the Hart Trophy since Bobby Orr in 1972 — will have his No. 44 raised to the rafters by the St. Louis Blues before their 8 p.m. ET tilt with Nashville.

• The best two Original Six teams in the league this year square off on Wednesday night, as the Maple Leafs visit the Rangers at MSG.

News Related

OTHER NEWS

New York Rangers get another comeback win to force Game 7 vs. Pittsburgh Penguins

PITTSBURGH — How many times can the New York Rangers dig themselves into a hole and climb back out? At least one more, as of Friday night. The Blueshirts came ... Read more »

Wilson, balanced Aces cruise to 96-73 victory over Dream

COLLEGE PARK, Ga. (AP) — A’ja Wilson scored 15 points, Kelsey Plum had 14 points and 11 assists and the Las Vegas Aces rolled to a 96-73 victory over the ... Read more »

EXPLAINER: Why frustration lingers in Okinawa 50 years later

The Associated PressFILE – U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Mike Anglen of Turner, Ore., center, stands atop a cliff as Sgt. Bryan Wallace of Pikin, Ill., waits for his turn before ... Read more »

Astros beat Nationals 6-1 for 11th straight victory

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jose Altuve homered on the first pitch of the game, Yordan Alvarez and Yuli Gurriel also went deep and the Houston Astros extended their winning streak to ... Read more »

Kreider scores late, Rangers edge Pens 5-3 to force Game 7

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Chris Kreider’s long slap shot bounced over Louis Domingue and into the net with 1:28 left and the New York Rangers beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 5-3 on ... Read more »

Astros push winning streak to 11, roll past Nationals 6-1

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jose Altuve homered on the first pitch of the game, and Yordan Alvarez and Yuli Gurriel also went deep to help the Houston Astros extend their winning ... Read more »

Moustakas, Drury power Reds to 8-2 victory over Pirates

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Mike Moustakas homered twice and Brandon Drury drove in four runs to break out of a slump and lead the resurgent Cincinnati Reds to an 8-2 victory ... Read more »

Peterson's bases-loaded walk lifts Brewers over Marlins 2-1

MIAMI (AP) — Jace Peterson walked against Anthony Bender with the bases loaded in the ninth inning and the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Miami Marlins 2-1 Friday night. After starters ... Read more »

Padres: No cancer found during manager Bob Melvin's prostate surgery

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego Padres say no cancer was found when manager Bob Melvin had prostate surgery on Wednesday. Melvin, 60, was recovering at home Friday after ... Read more »

Ogunbowale, Gray help Wings rally past Mystics, 94-86

WASHINGTON (AP) — Arike Ogunbowale scored 27 points, Allisha Gray had 21 and the Dallas Wings overcame a 15-point second-quarter deficit to beat the Washington Mystics 94-86 on Friday night. ... Read more »

Resigning North Dakota senator led lawmakers in travel costs

The Associated PressFILE – North Dakota Sen. Ray Holmberg listens during a joint House and Senate Appropriations Committee meeting at the Capitol in Bismarck, N.D., on Jan. 7, 2009. Holmberg, ... Read more »

Residents in picturesque California county hit with gas prices topping $7 a gallon

A California county known for its spectacular mountains and proximity to Yosemite National Park has been paying the nation’s highest gas prices. Read more »

Boudreau to return as coach of Canucks next season

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Bruce Boudreau will return as coach of the Vancouver Canucks next season after helping to turn the struggling NHL club around as a midyear replacement. ... Read more »

New Zealand leader Jacinda Ardern tests positive for COVID

On Location: May 13, 2022 Catch up on the developing stories making headlines.The Associated Press WELLINGTON, New Zealand — New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has tested positive for COVID-19 ... Read more »

Today in History for May 14th

Highlights of this day in history: Colonists go ashore in Virginia to set up Jamestown; Lewis and Clark begin to explore Louisiana Territory; Israel founded; Skylab launched; Movie producer George ... Read more »

Twitter CEO expects Elon Musk acquisition to close, addresses spending cuts

Musk is awaiting details supporting calculations that spam, fake accounts represent less than 5% of Twitter's users Read more »

Padres: No cancer found during Bob Melvin's prostate surgery

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego Padres say no cancer was found when manager Bob Melvin had prostate surgery on Wednesday. Melvin, 60, was recovering at home Friday after ... Read more »

Renovated NYC museum shows indigenous perspectives

The American Museum of Natural History in New York City recently finished a major renovation of its exhibition on the native peoples of the northwest coast of North America. Curators ... Read more »

Police release 911 calls in Gilgo Beach case

A woman who disappeared in a beach community on New York’s Long Island more than a decade ago, sparking an investigation into a possible serial killer, said “there’s somebody after ... Read more »

Academy Awards set 2023 Oscars for March 12

The Associated PressFILE – Oscar statue on the red carpet at the Oscars on Sunday, March 27, 2022, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. Next year’s Academy Awards will ... Read more »

Actor Fred Ward, of 'Tremors,' 'The Right Stuff' fame, dies

The Associated PressFILE – Fred Ward, a cast member in “30 Minutes or Less,” poses at the premiere of the film in Los Angeles on Aug. 8, 2011. Ward, a ... Read more »

Judge refuses to drop elections suit against Trump, media

NEW YORK — A Colorado judge on Friday denied motions to dismiss a defamation lawsuit filed by an election systems worker against former President Donald Trump’s campaign, two of its ... Read more »

Q&A: Becky G unveils every side of herself in latest album

The Associated PressFILE – Becky G appears at the Oscars in Los Angeles on March 27, 2022. Beck G’s latest album is “Esquemas.” (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File) NEW YORK ... Read more »

North Korea reports 21 new deaths as it battles COVID-19 outbreak

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea reports 21 new deaths as it battles COVID-19 outbreak. Read more »

North Korea confirms 21 new deaths as it battles COVID-19

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea says 21 people died and 174,440 people were newly found with fever symptoms on Friday alone as the country scrambles to slow the spread ... Read more »

White Sox place Giolito on COVID list, activate Vaughn

The Chicago White Sox placed ace Lucas Giolito on the COVID-19 injured list and activated outfielder Andrew Vaughn following a rehab assignment with Triple-A Charlotte on Friday. Giolito began experiencing ... Read more »

Traded back and forth, Ford learns to live out of suitcase

NEW YORK (AP) — Mike Ford has learned to travel light — and quickly. Since the start of the season, the 29-year-old first baseman has played for Tacoma, San Francisco ... Read more »

Falcon 9 rocket launches Starlink satellites

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched 53 Starlink satellites to low-Earth orbit from California on Friday. (May 13) Read more »

Celtics' Robert Williams remains out for Game 6 vs. Bucks

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Boston forward/center Robert Williams missed his third straight game with an injured left knee as the Celtics tried to keep their season alive Friday night in Game ... Read more »

Padres sign Robinson Canó, plan to use him off the bench

ATLANTA (AP) — The San Diego Padres have signed veteran second baseman Robinson Canó to a major league contract and plan to use him as a left-handed bat off the ... Read more »

WNBA star's Russia detention extended by 1 month

The lawyer for WNBA star Brittney Griner says her pre-trial detention in Russia has been extended by one month. Alexander Boykov told The Associated Press the relatively short extension indicated ... Read more »

Louisiana justices toss COVID-related charges against pastor

Hundreds of thousands of Americans fighting long-haul symptoms from COVID-19 Dr. David Putrino from Mount Sinai Health System and COVID long-hauler Joel Fram discuss the long-term effects of the disease.The ... Read more »

Sandy Hook lawsuits against Alex Jones on track to resume

The Associated PressFILE – This Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2018, photo shows radio show host and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones at Capitol Hill in Washington. The Sandy Hook families’ lawsuits against ... Read more »

Rockies' Bryant closer to return after cortisone shot

DENVER (AP) — Colorado Rockies outfielder Kris Bryant took swings in the cage Friday for the first time since he was sidelined with a sore back nearly three weeks ago ... Read more »

Mariners demote Jarred Kelenic to minors after poor start

NEW YORK (AP) — Rather than make his Citi Field debut against the team that traded him, Jarred Kelenic was demoted to Triple-A Tacoma by the Seattle Mariners on Friday ... Read more »

Biden: ASEAN partnership 'critical' in this moment

Looking to strengthen ties, President Joe Biden welcomes leaders from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to Washington for the first time. “We’re launching a new era in U.S.-ASEAN relations,” ... Read more »

Phil Mickelson will not defend his title at next week's PGA Championship

Phil Mickelson caught lightning in a bottle last year at Kiawah Island, winning a major championship at 50 years of age. The fairways flooded, and the golf world stood and ... Read more »

Tennessee Titans' Malik Willis on Ryan Tannehill's mentorship comments: 'Everything is cool'

The Tennessee Titans didn’t take issue with Ryan Tannehill’s comments about mentoring third-round rookie Malik Willis. Willis and coach Mike Vrabel were asked about Tannehill’s scrutinized remarks following the first ... Read more »

Lawyers plan suit against Lufthansa over Jewish passengers

Lawyers for 26 passengers said Friday they told Lufthansa that they will sue the German airline for refusing to let members of a large group of Orthodox Jewish passengers board ... Read more »

Wild face offseason after yet another early ouster

While the Minnesota Wild were stacking up franchise records and securing the extra home game for the first round, general manager Bill Guerin carefully acknowledged a “great year” for the ... Read more »